Wine of the Day: Edna Valley Vineyard Chardonnay; Michigan Wine Showcase


(Image courtesy of E. and J. Gallo)

(Image courtesy of E. and J. Gallo)

Edna Valley Vineyard Central Coast Chardonnay 2011, $15

Chardonnay has long been a specialty at this pioneering winery in San Luis Obispo County in the shadows of the mountains and in close range of the ocean. This is honest, elegant Chardonnay — a wine to sip and savor slowly, made mostly off the grapes of EVV’s Paragon Vineyard. Lift a glass to your nose and inhale scents of green apple, pear, pineapple, citrus, white nectarine and subtle smoke off the barrels. In the mouth, the oak barrel aging infuses the wine with lovely spice and adds to the structure. It has length on the palate, finishing dry and citrusy. I love good Chardonnay, and this one is affordable considering its pedigree. Edna Valley Vineyard was purchased in 2011 by E. and J. Gallo Winery. Josh Baker  joined the winery in 2003 as cellar master and quickly worked his way up to winemaker. The winery is halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco and benefits from the cool ocean fog, warm sun and resulting long growing season. The winery was founded in 1980.

Where to find this wine: It’s widely distributed in Metro Detroit. Among the many stores: Plum Market, West Bloomfield; Red Wagon, Troy; Meijer, Rochester Hills; Market Square, West Bloomfield; Holiday Market, Royal Oak; Kroger, Birmingham; many Walgreens; Busch’s, Plymouth; many Targets.

Edna Valley Vineayard Central Coast Cabernet Sauvignon 2011, $15

This is a medium-bodied Cab with good structure and depth of flavors — a great buy for the SRP of $15. It’s a cocktail of dark plum, blackberry, cassis, cocoa and vanilla. It was aged 12 months in French oak, a third of it new. You will have to look long and hard to find a Cabernet this good at this price.


The annual Michigan Wine Showcase to debut new wines and feature winemakers from around the state is set to take place Monday, April 15, at the Rattlesnake in Detroit, and once more Executive Chef Chris Franz will supply all the tasty hors d’oeuvres.

And who are the hosts? Well the sommeliers we all love: Claudia Tyagi and Madeline Triffon with support from the Michigan Grape & Wine Industry Council, Plum Market and of course the Rattlesnake.

Showcase Details

>> 6 to 8:30 p.m. Monday, April 15, at the Rattlesnake, 300 River Place, Detroit, Detroit, MI 48207

>> Tickets are $38 in advance, $45 at the door including wines and generous hors d’oeuvres. Purchase advance tickets at the Michigan Wines website or call Jim McClure at 734-677-0503.

>> Participating wineries: Bel Lago, Black Star Farms, Blue Water Winery, Blustone Vineyards, Brengman Brothers, Brys Estate, Burgdorf’s Winery, Chateau Chantal, Chateau Fontaine, Chateau Grand Traverse, Dizzy Daisy, Fenn Valley, Forty-Five North, Good Harbor Vineyards, Hawthorne Vineyards, L. Mawby/M.Lawrence, Laurentide, Left Foot Charley, Lynn Aleksandr, Mackinaw Trail Winery, Northern Sun Winery, Peninsula Cellars, Sandhill Crane Vineyards,Tabor Hill, Uncle John’s, Verterra and Wyncroft.

You can contact Sandra Silfven at